Degradation of an institution will give rise to another. In this context, the degraded institution that i refer is the TV media. The rising institution is the blogoshpere (includes blogs and other social networks).
Personally, current affairs and policy matters interest me a lot. During the pre-internet days, I used to talk to myself, indulging in imaginary discussions with what I thought were like-minded folks while reading newspapers and watching TV back in the early 2000s. As the debates on TV began to grow, so did my imaginary discussions. At the most, I used to write out some thoughts and reduce to boredom a group of very close friends who were kind enough not to ask me to stop .
And that’s when blogosphere happened. First, I got to read a few blogs in the 2007-2008 timeframe. I wanted to write out too, but was scared for a while. 2009 elections spurred me to start sharing my thoughts. I did not know who Offstumped was or who ran the Realitycheck India blog, but it was fascinating to read all the posts there. Never knew about www.cbcnn.blogspot.com and was thrilled to see that few folks have taken out their time from their normal work to write about stuff that interests me too. Likewise, many such blogs (too many to name) captured my attention.
And then Twitter happened. I have come across so many interesting profiles that sometimes I feel so good about all those imaginary discussions I had. I felt good because those discussions don’t feel imaginary anymore :). It’s as if I knew these people from a long time. And the best part – almost all of them had full time jobs; as in their time and effort that went into detailing stuff outside their work was outstanding. I have been fortunate enough to get to interact with a wide range of folks – from students to grand parents :D.
More importantly, I learnt a lot. A lot of my thinking process underwent changes. I could refine the thoughts better. Some blogs made me rethink some of my adamant and strong positions (and that includes eating veg food outside :P). The web always threw up a host of differing viewpoints on a single issue (in detail, not in vaccum!) And that’s been the biggest takeaway in these 3-4 years of exposure on the web. Learning.
What spurred me to write this? The portal, Centre Right India released their promising roadmap here. Folks that run this portal have a full time job. They run this out of sheer love for creating an alternative and (more importantly) meaningful discourse. Many folks who contribute extremely well researched blogs on this forum have a full time job. It fascinates me that there are so many well meaning folks who wish to contribute their thoughts for a purposeful discourse. And that two full time job holders have taken it upon them to create this institution is truly commendable.
TV media as we have seen is becoming a bane. An institution that is degrading. CRI is providing a platform for you to stop having those imaginary discussions walking around in your room :). Come and pour your thoughts in here. Contributing to them doesn’t just mean merely writing blogs. Read them, discuss them, tear our blogs apart (but only based on facts, not like the Rahul Gandhi act :D), and appreciate them 🙂 – that’s contributing too. Enhance your knowledge on the web.
Wishing CRI and all other bloggers on the web a very good luck. Here’s to a better public discourse on policy. Cheers!
Editor’s Note – We are overwhelmed by many such words of encouragment . We hope that with all your support and wishes we can make a small difference